Saturday, September 24, 2011

Climate Change Poem 11

Framed fog, December 2008

Two global events are occurring on September 24, 2011:

1. Moving Planet, a worldwide rally to demand solutions to the climate crisis.

2. 100 Thousand Poets for Change, a demonstration/celebration of poetry to promote serious social, environmental, and political change.

I thought: Why not do both?

Barring an emergency, I am posting from midnight to midnight, one poem per hour (at any time during that hour). That's starting from 00:00-01:00 and ending at 23:00-24:00 Eastern Time today.

All the poems are sonnets. Each takes its cue from an article dealing with climate change. The articles had been posted beginning on September 15 -- the date of the 24-hour Climate Reality Project that inspired me to do this -- to September 19, the day I drafted the twenty-fourth poem.

The poem for Hour 11 takes its cue from "Arctic ice melts to second-lowest level, says study" (Deborah Zabarenko, Reuters, Sept. 15, 2011).

Dwindling Expectations

U.S. and German satellites both show
Decreases in amounts of Arctic ice.
Two-thousand-seven marked a record low.
Preliminary data now suffice,

But news from Bremen says that record broke
This month, with water patches taking hold.
The U.S. sees a slightly lesser soak,
But both agree the Arctic is less cold,

With warmest temperatures the past five years.
And though the second-lowest ice extent
(In U.S. terms) perhaps less bleak appears,
It still foretells a harsh predicament.

For Arctic ice today is more dispersed,
And thus more prone to melt and vanish first.

Audio (1:14):

Part of the Solution website (chosen at random)
National Resources Defense Council
Elissa Malcohn's Deviations and Other Journeys
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